Turkish Channels Slammed After No Women Invited To Discuss Anti-Domestic Violence Treaty Withdrawal

Story By: Feza Uzay, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency:  Newsflash

A number of Turkish TV channels have come under fire after not a single female guest was invited to speak on Turkey’s withdrawal from the Istanbul Convention, a human rights treaty against violence against women.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan withdrew Turkey from the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence, also known as the Istanbul Convention, in the early hours of 20th March.

Although it is unclear why President Erdogan withdrew Turkey from the treaty, likeminded conservatives have argued that it harms traditional family values and advocates for the LGBT community.


The withdrawal was a hot topic of debate in Turkey throughout Saturday, given the large number of recent high-profile cases of domestic violence and femicide in the transcontinental country.

Turkish TV news channels Haberturk and CNN Turk were slammed after viewers noticed that not a single female guest was invited to discuss the decision on air throughout Saturday.

In fact, viewers noticed that the only women participating in the on-air discussions were the news reporters quizzing the male guests.


Council of Europe Secretary General Marija Pejcinovic Buric has called Turkey’s announced withdrawal from the Istanbul Convention “devastating news”.

She wrote: “The Istanbul Convention covers 34 European countries and is widely regarded as the gold standard in international efforts to protect women and girls from the violence that they face every day in our societies.

“This move is a huge setback to these efforts and all the more deplorable because it compromises the protection of women in Turkey, across Europe and beyond.”

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